LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, December 29, 2018: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp celebrates with Xherdan Shaqiri after the 5-1 victory during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Arsenal FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

“I believe” – Jurgen Klopp given backing by his former Liverpool wild card

Xherdan Shaqiri believes Jurgen Klopp can drag Liverpool back to the top after what has been a testing season, labelling the manager a “big win.”

The Swiss international left Anfield in August 2021 to join Ligue 1 side Lyon for a fee of around £9.5 million, and has since moved again to play in MLS.

Shaqiri picked up Premier League and Champions League winner’s medals during his time on Merseyside, starting and providing an assist in the famous 4-0 win over Barcelona at Anfield in 2019.

Speaking to the Guardian, Shaqiri spoke glowingly about his three-year spell at Liverpool and insisted that Klopp is the right man to solve the Reds’ problems.

“I believe in Jurgen. I hope he stays as long as possible,” he said.

“He’s a big win for the club.

“I think they’re going to be busy in the transfer market [this summer].

“But I think it is crucial they make the Champions League so that they can get the players they want.”

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, October 31, 2020: Liverpool’s manager Jürgen Klopp prepares to bring on substitutes Xherdan Shaqiri and Diogo Jota (L) during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and West Ham United FC at Anfield. The game was played behind closed doors due to the UK government’s social distancing laws during the Coronavirus COVID-19 Pandemic. (Pic by Propaganda)

The Champions League football Shaqiri refers to has all but evaporated as a possibility for next season, but it is a rousing endorsement for the manager, who is facing perhaps his toughest challenge at Liverpool so far.

The 31-year-old was signed from Stoke in the summer of 2018 for £13.5 million and immediately told the club’s official website that his aim was to “win titles” for Liverpool.

He achieved just that, winning the Champions League in his first season and following it up with an emphatic Premier League title triumph in 2019/20 that saw the Reds win 26 of the first 27 fixtures.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, December 4, 2019: Liverpool's Xherdan Shaqiri celebrates his side's fifth goal during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Everton FC, the 234th Merseyside Derby, at Anfield. Liverpool won 5-2. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

The Chicago Fire winger never quite made it into Klopp’s regular starting XI, but still recalls his Liverpool career fondly.

“I will always look back with a lot of pride. I think what we achieved is amazing,” he admitted.

“Who will ever forget what we did that night [against Barcelona].”

Shaqiri left Anfield with the best wishes of everybody at the club and has since gone on to net seven goals and assist another six in 31 games in MLS.